9. Tyler Biggs, Miami University
|Sept. 29||Ryan Callahan|
BORN: April 30, 1993
HOMETOWN: Loveland, Ohio
LAST SEASON: Scored 19 goals and 12 assists for the US-NTDP U18 team.
It’s hard not to get excited about Biggs, unless you’re an opposing player trying to defend him – or defend yourself, for that matter.
Yep, Biggs is just another Division-I college recruit and another first-round NHL draft choice out of the U.S. National Team Development Program, where he scored 31 points last season as captain of the U18 team. In April, he scored Team USA’s overtime winner to defeat Canada in the U18 World Championships semifinals.
The power forward helps comprise one of college hockey’s top recruiting classes at Miami University. Opening up this year’s USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine College Hockey Poll at No. 1, the RedHawks are expected to contend for an NCAA National Championship. How much can be expected from the incoming freshman?
Selected 22nd overall by the Toronto Maple Leafs in June, his combination of size and skill tempted several organizations at the draft, but none more so than Toronto. General Manager Brian Burke, who also served as GM for the 2010 U.S. Olympic Team, traded up to acquire the young prospect.
Biggs may possess dual U.S.-Canadian citizenship, but don’t question his commitment to ole’ Lady Liberty.
If Tyler Biggs wasn't such an extraordinarily talented hockey player for the U.S. National Team Development Program's under-18 team, he might be wearing military fatigues serving his country somewhere.
No doubt about it, Biggs is a proud American.
"I take pride in representing my country and I guess, for me, (the military) was definitely an idea," Biggs told NHL.com. "I can't see myself doing much more than hockey, but then there was always that (military). I have the utmost respect for our servicemen and women, and to be a part of something like that would mean a lot to me, I think."
No wonder Burke likes him. We do, too.